Burger chosen as one of 50 Missourians you should know
Originally published April 3, 2013 at 6 a.m., updated April 3, 2013 at 6 a.m.
California Ingram's, Kansas City's business magazine, selected Morris Burger of Burgers Smokehouse as one of the "50 Missourians You Should Know for 2013." The article was featured in the March issue. The men and women chosen have been at the fore of identifying the challenges the state faces and doggedly pursued opportunities available to them. They were chosen because their accomplishments have made Missouri a better place to live, work and do business and their examples have been an inspiration to others.
Morris' father, the late E.M. Burger, began selling country ham in 1927 to supplement his farm income. Morris, president/CEO emeritus of Burgers Smokehouse, joined the family business in 1959 after graduating from the University of Missouri and a two-year stint in the United States Army. In the decades that followed, Burger oversaw expansions, processing improvements and technological changes. The company began sending a Christmas catalog in the early 1960's that developed into a Direct Marketing Division for orders received by mail, phone, FAX and internet. This was followed by a Food Service Division serving hundreds of restaurants nationwide.
Early ham sales were for whole, uncooked country hams only. Gradually hams were offered sliced, diced, spiral sliced, center cut, bean meat; cooked or uncooked; and country or city. The product line was expanded to include other cured and smoked meats as well as steaks, seafood, poultry, buffalo and desserts. Today, the family owned business, located three miles south of California, is managed by third-generation family members.
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